If you are like me, at the end of a gardening day that last thing you feel like doing is cleaning garden tools, but a good habit to get into. Good garden tools are expensive and cheap ones are hardly worth buying because they do not last or do the job well in the first place. Good tools are easier on the gardener in the long run and well worth the investment. Therefore they deserve to be looked after so they well last you a very long time.
At the end of each gardening day you should gather them all up and clean garden tools by brushing off the dirt clinging to their blades. Then hose them down (only those tools that can handle water) to remove the remaining dirt and debris. After you hose it is really important that you dry them off thoroughly so as not to encourage rust.
Examine them to see if any rust exists. Remove any rust with a wire brush. To prevent furthur rust oil the metal parts of your tools regularly using a rag moistened with mineral or light vegetable oil. Do not use motor oil. For manual lawnmowers and loppers lubricate their springs and other movingparts with lightweight machine oil.
Eventually the blades on your tools will loose their original sharpness as with hoes and spades so sharpen these with a hand file. Pruners, knives and axes will need to be sharpened on a wet stone and you might prefer to take these to a sharpening shop. All motorized tools should be serviced by an expert.
Basically the care of garden tools is simple. Do not leave your tools hanging around anywhere in the garden where they will likely get lost or rained on. Use the appropriate tool for the job to prevent breakage. Keep your tools clean, dry, oiled and stored in a dry place of easy access. If you take care of tools they will look after you. They will perform better with less effort on your part saving the gardener so he or she can garden another day.